Blighted Lives, Blessed Lives

The Inquirer Editorial
By Aurelio S. Agcaoili

Our days are heady as no other. Even from the point of view of Filipino migrants and immigrants in the United States and elsewhere, the narratives of the wanton destruction of our dreams have come close to perdition, with complex plots accountable to naked ambition, presidential intransigence, and plain pernicious perfidy on the part of the power holders.

In many ways, we still live blighted lives now. We have lived blighted lives long before. Today, the blight seems to assume a more evil form each day.

Because we see the workings of a depraved leadership of the elites who do not know how to use their heads in the honest pursuit of social justice.

Because we see this social drama with the whole country as the stage and with the poor people and the disadvantaged held hostage in order to account the false heroism of pretenders to the throne and to the power we delegated to the leaders.

Because in the accounting of what is best for the country, the small men and small women of the republic are never consulted by the big men and big women of the republic—those who have the luxury to talk about the abstractions that do not have anything to do with the pangs of hunger that we feel every minute.

Because in these last few days the political elites have been truly blackmailed by us—us the common tao, us the masses. And these political elites are the very people who have offered us liberty and freedom, justice and progress, democracy and fairness.

We accuse the political elites of a conspiracy to make us more and more marginalized in order for them to maintain their stronghold and stranglehold, two identical evils that have visited us these last few days.

We accuse them of being corrupt, their mindsets and consciousness corrupting and that they have continued to infect us with some social maladies that they have been afflicted.

The political elites plot to sow intrigue among our ranks in order to confuse us more systematically and in order for them to hide their contradictions by their shallow discourse on what is best for us all.

This blight has remained the same whether we are Filipinos holding out in the old, tired, and worn country.

This blight is the same whether we have opted, bravely or cowardly, to get out of our former country’s cauldron.

This blight has perniciously attacked our mind and has lodged there, making us numb and unable to see the difference between options, as if the battle to be won is one between evils, our choice reduced to the lesser one.

We cannot go on like this. We cannot continue to become impotent before others and equally impotent before the children of our land. We call for an exorcism from this blight. And now.

We call for a political purgation on the whole scale, from the presidency to the barangay tanod, from the national leaders to the local politicos who have evolved a fiefdom that assures them of their continued rule over us.

Now we ask that our political leaders—elites or those pretenders—to bless our lives by their responsible actions. We cannot now remain divided, with attacks and counter-attacks that do not pay heed to our call for sobriety and sanity, prudence and patriotism, rationality and redemption.

It is high time that the political elites become organized. Or they end up the loser. The enlightened masses are what they are: enlightened. And they can be powerful.

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